Archive for August 2010

Is it possible to predict future climate change?

Aug 31st, 2010 | By




Climate change is a topic for hot debate across countries right now, but is it possible to predict future climate change? Researchers at Niels Bohr Institute at the University of Copenhagen said that climate change probably occurs as a result of different chaotic influences and as a result would be difficult to predict. The most

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Dams on Himalayan Rivers of India : How good is the science?

Aug 31st, 2010 | By




Quite a large number of dams are being planned on the Himalayan rivers by water planners of the Government of India and of the state governments. But environmentalists feel that its consequence will be catastrophic. In fact, a report submitted to the environment ministry revealed that Tehri dam which is the world’s fifth largest had

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$100bn a year needed to fight climate change: Bjørn Lomborg

Aug 31st, 2010 | By




Exclusive: ‘Skeptical Environmentalist’ and critic of climate scientists to declare global warming a chief concern facing world. The world’s most high-profile climate change sceptic is to declare that global warming is “undoubtedly one of the chief concerns facing the world today” and “a challenge humanity must confront”, in an apparent U-turn that will give a

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Climate change: The facts of life

Aug 31st, 2010 | By




Political action seems again improbable, but it remains more urgent than ever. Editorial: Climate change now reveals itself on a weekly basis. Scientists this month identified a colony of the Aedes aegypti mosquito, which carries both yellow fever and the dengue virus, in the Netherlands. This African insect had not been seen in Europe for

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Why failure of climate summit would herald global catastrophe: 3.5c

Aug 31st, 2010 | By




The world is heading for the next major climate change conference in Cancun later this year on course for global warming of up to 3.5C in the coming century, a series of scientific analyses suggest. The failure of last December’s UN climate summit in Copenhagen means that cuts in carbon emissions pledged by the international

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An Unlikely General in Climate-Change War

Aug 31st, 2010 | By




Global-Warming Evangelist Pachauri Began His Career Building Diesel Locomotives, Advocating for the Right to Burn Coal By JEFFREY BALL : In 2002, when Rajendra Pachauri was elected head of the world’s top climate-science body, Al Gore and other environmentalists condemned him as a favorite of the fossil-fuel industry. Today, the 70-year-old chairman of the Intergovernmental

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$28 billion pledged by rich nations to fight climate change

Aug 31st, 2010 | By




$27.9 billion in “fast-start” funding has so far been pledged by industrialized countries to help developing countries mitigate and adapt to climate change, according to a new climate finance tracking tool released by the World Resources Institute (WRI). $27.9 billion in “fast-start” funding has so far been pledged by industrialized countries to help developing countries

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Dramatic climate change is unpredictable

Aug 31st, 2010 | By




The fear that global temperature can change very quickly and cause dramatic climate changes that may have a disastrous impact on many countries and populations is great around the world. But what causes climate change and is it possible to predict future climate change? New research from the Niels Bohr Institute at the University of

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IPCC Press Conference: on Review of Procedures by InterAcademy Council

Aug 31st, 2010 | By




The Chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) this morning voiced hope that a newly-released review of Panel working methods would strengthen its efforts, as well as its public credibility, while he stressed that the overall conclusions of its assessments were not in doubt. “Science has confirmed that climate change is real,” Rajendra

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Climate Change Lies are Exposed

Aug 31st, 2010 | By




THE world’s leading climate change body has been accused of losing credibility after a damning report into its research practices. A high-level inquiry into the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change found there was “little evidence” for its claims about global warming. It also said the panel had emphasised the negative impacts of climate change and

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UN climate change panel to face errors verdict

Aug 31st, 2010 | By




An international committee reviewing the “processes and procedures” of the UN’s climate science panel is set to report on Monday. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has faced mounting pressure over errors in its last major assessment of climate science in 2007. The review was overseen by the Inter-Academy Council, which brings together bodies

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National Institute for Climate and Environment Studies in India

Aug 29th, 2010 | By




Department of Space (DOS) India has proposed to setup a new Institute called “National Institute for Climate and Environment Studies (NICES)” with the involvement of Ministry of Environment & Forests (MoEF), Department of Science & Technology (DST) and Ministry of Earth Sciences (MoES). The institute will initially be located and nucleated at the National Atmospheric

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How does climate change affect water resource management?

Aug 29th, 2010 | By




The effect of climate change on community water resource management will be the focus of the Clean Water and Climate Adaptation Summit planned for September 16 and 17 at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. Presented by the Arboretum, in collaboration with the Minnehaha Creek Watershed District and the Minnesota Climate Change Adaptation Working Group, the summit

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UN climate change panel to be warned over reports

Aug 29th, 2010 | By




The United Nation’s climate change organisation faces a warning over how it uses scientific facts in its influential reports, following the discovery of a series of embarrassing errors in its work. A review of the practices of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has been conducted in response to intense criticism of the body,

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Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology, to unveil latest in climate change science

Aug 28th, 2010 | By




The Indian Institute of Tropical Meteorology (IITM) will organise a workshop on advances in science of climate change and Indian monsoon on August 31-September 1. The programme is being jointly organised by Centre for Climate Change Research and IITM. Although it is realised that increasing concentration of atmospheric greenhouse gases over the last century has

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The bends in our rivers-India

Aug 28th, 2010 | By




With two major victories under its belt, August is turning out to be a happy month for the green lobby: first, it forced the Centre to scrap the 600 MW Loharinag Pala hydroelectric project in Uttarakhand and second, it foiled Vedanta Resources’ dream of mining the Niyamgiri hills in Orissa. Despite these triumphs, it would

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China expedites finalization of its new biodiversity strategy and action plan

Aug 28th, 2010 | By




China, which in 1994 became the first country to prepare a national biodiversity strategy and action plan (NBSAP), is now among a select group of countries that have initiated a new strategy and action plan in advance of the Nagoya Biodiversity Summit. Sponsored by the EU-China Biodiversity Programme, an ternational forum on the new biodiversity

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How Green can be the Green India Mission?

Aug 27th, 2010 | By




The proposed Green India Mission would fail to make significant difference if the policy of sacrificing the existing natural forests for the so-called developmental programmes continues unabated. One of the 8 Missions under National action Plan on Climate Change (NAPCC) is Green India Mission (GIM). Its draft Mission document states the main objective as doubling

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Then and Now: The Retreating Glaciers in Himalaya

Aug 27th, 2010 | By




New York Times article highlights video featuring OSU’s Lonnie Thompson on vanishing Himalayan glaciers. Photo Source: David Breashears/GlacierWorks  






Is climate change behind extreme weather?

Aug 27th, 2010 | By




A heat wave generating 100 degree-plus highs in the area ended on Monday. In June, flash flooding assaulted the city, in May there was a tornado threat, in December a blizzard. Now, drought is becoming a factor in parts of Oklahoma, a weather official said. Elsewhere around the world, devastating floods occurred in Pakistan and

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Climate change politics: Greens hold lever in Australia

Aug 27th, 2010 | By




Seventeen years less a day after Kim Campbell was sworn in as the first woman Prime Minister of Canada, Julia Gillard ascended to the Prime Minister’s office here in Australia, the first woman to ever do so. That was way back on June 24. Unfortunately for Gillard, it now looks like the comparisons with Campbell

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Not climate, we must change

Aug 27th, 2010 | By




Four years ago, I met Al Gore and saw his presentation on climate change. I don’t want to sound alarmist, but the scenario that emerged from our discussions was earth-shattering, to say the least. I realized with pain and anguish that the world as I know will never be the same again. The snow-capped mountains,

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How Expanding Animal Agriculture Swamped Pakistan

Aug 27th, 2010 | By




Is the world close to reaching finite ecological limits on the production capacity of animal agriculture? Flooding inundating more than a fifth of Pakistan in recent weeks may demonstrate that the limits have already been exceeded, doing catastrophic harm to more than 20 million displaced people and 30 million livestock, plus untold millions of dogs,

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Words of Warning: Melting permafrost, cheap oil, and the end of the world as we know it: Dr. Fatih Birol’s

Aug 27th, 2010 | By




This summer, climate change, or global warming, has arguably established itself as a reality to be reckoned with. Greenhouse gases are heating up the earth’s atmosphere and, as a result, global weather conditions now seem to have gone truly haywire. Temperatures are unusually high in certain places, while rain in other places is causing unprecedented

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Summiters’ to rally at UN-Save the HIMALAYA

Aug 27th, 2010 | By




While world leaders gather at the United Nations, Summiters Summit to Save the Himalayas Campaign, which started at the Copenhagen climate change meeting in December 2009, will be marching in front of the UN Headquarters in New York with the plea ‘Save the Himalayas from the Impact of Climate Change’. Confirming the date and venue,

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Rajendra Pachauri innocent of financial misdealings but smears will continue

Aug 27th, 2010 | By




A review of the IPCC chairman’s financial relationships reveals a scrupulously honest man has been much maligned. Has anyone been as badly maligned as Rajendra Pachauri, chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)? In December, the Sunday Telegraph carried a long and prominent feature written by Christopher Booker and Richard North, titled: Questions

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It is time for even bolder initiatives in the Indus River Valley

Aug 27th, 2010 | By




With new reports of flood-related calamity in Pakistan today, it is time to launch a different sort of international response to the problem in the Indus River Valley. Because as tragic as this disaster that has shattered the lives of perhaps as many as three New York Cities full of people has been, it is

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Time to blame climate change for extreme weather?

Aug 26th, 2010 | By




Editorial: IT IS time to start asking the hard questions. Countless people in flood-stricken Pakistan have lost families and livelihoods. Who can they hold responsible and turn to for reparations? Less than a decade ago, these questions would have been dismissed outright. “Many scientists at the time said that you can never blame an individual

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Whose Water Is It Anyway?

Aug 26th, 2010 | By




STRESS POINT Water spraying from Bhakra Dam into the Sutlej River India’s disputes with its neighbours for water will escalate in the near future unless it begins to work with them to develop joint ventures for equitable sharing. Early this year, extremists in Pakistan found a new issue to bait India with. Hafiz Saeed, founder

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Climate Change: Asian Glaciers Retreating

Aug 26th, 2010 | By




Many glaciers in even the highest mountain ranges of the world are retreating because of climate change. Even Himalayas Affected. While what role, if any, climate change played in recent torrential floods in Asia is not known, there is plenty of evidence that the phenomenon is having an impact. A report compiled by the U.S.

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Asia under the weather

Aug 26th, 2010 | By




Climatologists analysing Pakistan’s catastrophic flooding, which killed an estimated 1,500 people and sent 20 per cent of its land under water, say India escaped the fury by a whisker. The ripples were felt in Leh, a “cold desert” that crowns India’s northern tip. On August 6 there, a “cloudburst”, or a sudden spell of piercing

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Ethical Lessons of the Pakistan Floods

Aug 26th, 2010 | By




By CSRwire Contributing Writer Francesca Rheannon The photos are wrenching: a young boy lying on a cot, his body emaciated by flood-borne cholera, a hand emerging from the floodwaters holding a small plastic bag of grain as its bearer struggles to cross a raging river, an old man pleading desperately for food at a refugee

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India Sets Aside $6.4 Billion to Fight Climate Change

Aug 26th, 2010 | By




The Indian government has sanctioned $6.4 billion to finance the efforts to mitigate the perspective impacts of climate change on the environmentally sensitive and populous areas of the country. These funds will be used to achieve the targets and goals mentioned in the National Action Plan on Climate Change released by the Prime Minister’s Council on Climate

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Zee News paints India green today with 60 lakhs trees

Aug 26th, 2010 | By




Zee News, which launched its celebrated nationwide campaign “My Earth My Duty” on June 5th 2010, is all set to paint India green today on 25th August 2010 by planting more than 60 lakh trees. Over 1 crore youth volunteers from various schools/colleges/villages/cities, covering the length and breadth of the country from Shimla to Chennai

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Cloudburst in Leh (India) may be due to climate change

Aug 26th, 2010 | By




Based on detailed analysis of weather data of last five years in Leh, Ladakh, scientists have attributed the recent cloudburst in the region to prolonged winters which may be due to climate change. “After going through the sequence of events of the weather that led to the cloudburst on August 6, it has been reinforced

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Glaciers retreating in Asia

Aug 26th, 2010 | By




Many of Asia’s glaciers are retreating as a result of climate change. This retreat impacts water supplies to millions of people, increases the likelihood of outburst floods that threaten life and property in nearby areas, and contributes to sea-level rise. The U.S. Geological Survey, in collaboration with 39 international scientists, published a report on the

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Allegations against Climate Science Continue to Unravel

Aug 26th, 2010 | By




Earlier this year, we published a backgrounder assessing recent controversies and claims surrounding the integrity of climate science. There have been several new developments since then, so we thought it would be useful to summarize the main ones. In line with the earlier investigations summarized in our backgrounder, the more recent reviews find that the

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Study Finds No Link Tying Disaster Losses to Human-Driven Warming

Aug 26th, 2010 | By




The pull of the ” front-page thought” and the eagerness of climate campaigners to jog the public have sometimes created a tendency to tie mounting losses from weather-related disasters to human-driven global warming. But finding a statistically robust link between such disasters and the building human climate influence remains a daunting task. A new analysis of

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Pitcher-plant-dwelling mosquito shows effects of Earth’s changing climate

Aug 26th, 2010 | By




Scientists at the University of Oregon have determined the genetic structure of the pitcher-plant-dwelling mosquito, the first animal to show an evolutionary response to rapid climate change. They used a high-throughput sequencing technique called Restriction-site Associated DNA (RAD) tagging to make the discovery. Using the RAD-Tag approach, the scientists have demonstrated that post-glacial populations of

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Climate change, capitalism and war produce disaster in Pakistan

Aug 25th, 2010 | By




The massive floods in Pakistan that affect 20 million people are far from a random “natural disaster.” Rather, they are a predictable result of global warming, capitalist development, and US-backed war. There have been 12 major floods in Pakistan since 1973, and three years ago the United Nation’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) warned

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Increased losses from Natural Disasters due to Wealth, Population Expansion

Aug 25th, 2010 | By




Analysis by Zahra Hirji : In recent decades, the amount of damage wrought by weather-related natural disasters has skyrocketed, much to the chagrin of insurance companies and the millions of people affected by them. Is this the work of human-induced climate change? Climate models predict that global warming will generate larger, more frequent extreme weather

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How to improve crop yields while reducing climate change!

Aug 25th, 2010 | By




With a one-two punch aimed at reducing climate change and improving crop yields worldwide, the for-profit company re:char is turning agricultural waste into soil-improving biochar. I spoke last week with re:char founder Jason Aramburu, a 2009 PopTech fellow, about how biochar works — and how it succeeds in an ambitious double-barreled mission. What is biochar

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Deluges after the Deluge: Catastrophic floods in Pakistan are likely to recur as global warming combines with El Niño

Aug 25th, 2010 | By




By: Julian Hunt– The Pakistani crisis is already one of the very first order. Some 20 million people have been left homeless, along a path of destruction of more than 600 miles. Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani has even compared the challenges the country now faces to those during the 1947 partition of the subcontinent

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Global warmists abandoned fact for fancy: Roger HELMER

Aug 25th, 2010 | By




Around the world, the fight against “cli- mate change” and carbon dioxide e emissions is costing literally hundreds of billions of dollars – and this at a time when the Western world is ravaged by recession. We can ill afford these sums. Many scientists think CO2 emissions have a trivial effect on climate, but even

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Government of India Funds Study on Impact of Climate change on Soil, Crops

Aug 25th, 2010 | By




Alarmed by the adverse impact of global warming on the farm sector, the union government has financed a study to assess the extent of damage on soil, crop, fishery and water, and other natural resources particularly in the drought-prone areas to formulate contingent crop planning strategy. Central government of India has given a grant of

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Jairam Ramesh: India’s Crusading Green Minister

Aug 25th, 2010 | By




Jairam Ramesh, India’s green minister, has found new power in saying no to big industrialists and multi-million dollar projects if he thinks ecological balance is at stake. Saying no to London-based industrialist Anil Agarwal’s Vedanta group’s bauxite mining project in Orissa is the latest of his headline-hogging decisions that has firmed up his reputation as

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Pakistan’s Climate Change Floods, Seen From Above

Aug 25th, 2010 | By




A series of satellite photographs conveys the epic scale of the floods sweeping through Pakistan, leaving millions homeless and the world aghast at an extreme weather disaster that experts consider the new normal. Above at left is the central Pakistan city of Hyderabad on July 31. At right is the city on August 19, as

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Global warming – It’s already happening

Aug 25th, 2010 | By




Satellite images of Petermann Glacier in northern Greenland on July 28 (left) and Aug 5 (right). A 60sqkm giant ice island – more than four times the size of New York’s Manhattan Island – seen in image at right, had broken off the glacier. Simultaneous weather-related catastrophes worldwide show the effects of global warming. FLOODS,

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Under Asian skies-Dr. R K Pachauri

Aug 25th, 2010 | By




The 16th South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (Saarc) summit held earlier this year in Bhutan focused on climate change. The subcontinent is facing unprecedented disasters with extreme precipitation events in many locations and public perception seems to link these with climate change.Single events like those occurring in Pakistan, Ladakh and Uttarakhand can’t, on a

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Earth’s Plant Growth Fell Because of Climate Change, Study Finds

Aug 24th, 2010 | By




Drought linked to climate change has reversed a decades-long trend of increased global plant growth, according to a new analysis of NASA satellite data. “Earth has done an ecological about-face,” a NASA statement said. “Global plant productivity that once flourished under warming temperatures and a lengthened growing season is now on the decline, struck by

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Weather or Climate change?

Aug 24th, 2010 | By




It’s hard to know whether individual weather events are just random fluctuations, or whether they are growing signs of climate change. What we need to look for are patterns- is the weather changing? And how do the changes that are actually happening compare to those predicted for climate change? Three years ago, two federal government

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The Pakistan Floods and Climate Change: Another Warning about Global Weirding

Aug 24th, 2010 | By




It was gratifying to see no less of a distinguished trio than Pakistan’s foreign minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi, USAID administrator Rajiv Shah and George Soros acknowledge this week the connection between climate change and natural disasters such as the current devastating flood in Pakistan. This connection is not a simple one, and those of us

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The way we react to climate change may be making it worse

Aug 24th, 2010 | By




The headline in The Ecologist, ‘Human response to climate change is making matters worse’, is a bit of a …… Upon reading the actual article, it doesn’t get that much better. A recent study has researched the impacts of human response to climate change on biodiversity. The study, recently published in the journal Conservation Letters, attempts

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Climate Change Adaptation: Floating Schools in Bangladesh

Aug 24th, 2010 | By




The South Asian country of Bangladesh is one of the places in the world considered most vulnerable to climate change. It is also one of the poorest nations on Earth. In Bangladesh, reducing CO2 emissions and implementing cap and trade schemes are not the issue. Already used to catastrophic flooding compounded by intense poverty, Bangladeshis

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Tracking the Himalaya’s Melting Glaciers

Aug 24th, 2010 | By




RIVERS OF ICE: Panoramic view of West Rongbuk Glacier and Mount Everest, taken in 1921 (top) by Major E.O. Wheeler and in 2009 (bottom) by David Breashears. (Photo courtesy of the Royal Geographical Society) View a photo gallery By David Breashears: For those who know the Himalaya well — I have climbed to the summit

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Time short for Ladakh flood victims as winter looms

Aug 24th, 2010 | By




Winters come harsh and early in India’s Himalayan region of Ladakh, where the waning summer spells more hardship for thousands left homeless by devastating flash floods. In Ladakh’s main city, Leh, around 800 families lost everything in the torrent of mud and water that invaded their homes 10 days ago and killed nearly 190 people.

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Experts Urge Faster and More Relevant U.N. Climate Reports

Aug 24th, 2010 | By




The U.N. panel of climate scientists should be more nimble at highlighting global warming trends and at fixing mistakes, experts said ahead of the planned August 30 release of a review of the group’s work. U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon asked for an independent review of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) after the group

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Group of Ministers in India decides to scrap NTPC Hydel project on Bhagirathi river

Aug 23rd, 2010 | By




Keeping religious sentiments and environmental concerns in view, a Group of Ministers (GoM) on Friday scrapped the NTPC’s controversial 600 MW Loharinag Pala hydel project on Bhagirathi river in Uttarakhand. Headed by Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee, the GoM in a meeting made a detailed re-examination of the project and recommended that the hydro-power dam, the

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China told to Develop its Own GM Food

Aug 23rd, 2010 | By




The Chinese consume millions of tons of genetically modified (GM) soybean oil every year without fuss despite the fact that attitudes toward GM food remain as divergent in the nation as they are in the rest of the world. China needs to step up agricultural innovation, including development of its own GM varieties, in response

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‘Roadmap’ to Tackle Climate Change-China

Aug 23rd, 2010 | By




The United Nations has high hopes that the Shanghai Declaration will become a “useful roadmap” for tackling climate change and other environmental, urban and social issues, Awni Behnam, assistant secretary-general of the UN, said over the weekend. The declaration, the key document of Expo 2010 Shanghai, aims to set a new milestone in the history

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